Five Hidden Secrets of Venice

April 10th, 2018


Venice – one of the world’s most beautiful, atmospheric and intriguing cities. You will always hear us say that it is a place like no other. When you visit Venice, your itinerary will undoubtedly include the unmissable sights like the Doges Palace, Saint Mark’s Square and Saint Mark’s Basilica – all truly beautiful. However would you like to experience some of Venice’s best kept secrets also? Here we introduce you to five hidden secrets of Venice, which are not to be missed. 

Libreria Acqua Alta.

On a street called Sestiere Castello you’ll find a fabulous little bookshop called Libreria Acqua Alta. It’s situated right on the waterfront, and there are tables and chairs for you to sit and peruse the stock. As the name suggests, it can be flooded – which is perhaps why the books are stored in bathtubs and old gondolas! That way, if the water comes, they will float. It’s a quaint and atmospheric stop that’s off the beaten track. 

Books in Libreria Acqua Alta, Venice.

The Liberia Acqua Alta in all its chaotic glory. It is a real literary treasure trove, complete with friendly cats. 


Venice is organized into six districts. One of those is Dorsoduro. It’s across the Ponte Dell Academia from San Marco. It’s certainly not hidden, but it may as well be as it’s distinctly less touristy. Yet, you’ll find prestigious galleries like the Peggy Guggenheim here – and it is a favorite neighborhood of artists and writers. It’s a perfect place to soak up a slower, quieter, but very beautiful part of Venice. If you go for a stroll, you may even spot Tramontin & Figli hard at work making gondolas – now that is a real taste of Venice, but one that’s hidden away. Stop off at Campo Santa Margherita too – one of the district’s market squares. You’ll find a wonderful bakery, and you can devour your purchase under a canopy of trees on the square itself. 

Waterfront at Dorsoduro in Venice

The waterfront at Dorsoduro, Venice. It’s quieter than San Marco, but it’s just as charming and beautiful. 

Eat where the locals eat. 

This secret is not exclusive to Venice, but it’s one to stick to if you want to see the real Venice and experience the best food. Catina Do Mori dates back to the 15th Century and claims to have fed and watered Casanova. It serves food and drink to its regulars at the bar as there are no tables. The food is amazing – focusing mainly on cichetti. Osteria Al Bacco is another good option for skipping the tourist crowds and eating with Venetians. It’s situated along Canal delle Capuzine – and you can eat in or outside in the garden. It’s renowned for its fabulous seafood. 

Visit Ca’Macana.

In Dorsoduro lies one of the city’s best mask shops. It’s definitely worth a walk by to see their hand made mask work. Venetian masks are renowned for their use in the Ventian Carnivale, which takes place in February each year, and for their exquisite detail and beauty. They even do classes here where you can decorate your own. 

Ca’Macana where you can make your own Venetian mask

Venetian masks are infamous. Instead of purchasing one, you can make your own. 

Venetian Ghosts. 

Or more specifically, take a tour after dark to find out about Venice’s Ghosts and Legends. Your guide will take you to the sites that are linked with Venice’s most fascinating ghost stories. They’ll share tales of intrigue and tales of murder, sometimes right where these happenings took place hundreds of years ago.  It’s a fascinating experience and shows a very different side to the city. 

Explore Venice. 

If you are planning to visit Venice then our team at Venice Incoming will be able to help you explore the city. Our professional guides can take you on a tour of all the main sites – as well as those off the beaten track in hidden Venice. Whether that’s to the quirky bookshop with its stock stored in old gondolas or on a tour to meet Venetian ghosts – we cover it all with our Venice City Tours and our Unusual Venice Tours. Visit our website at for more information. 

You can also stay up to date with our tours, news and reviews from other guests by following us on our Facebook, TripAdvisor and Instagram pages.  

See you soon. 

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